In group Somalia

Sustainable Solutions Working Group


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Housing, Land and Property

Most land in Somalia is privately owned. Dominant clans control land and are often hesitant or unwilling to sell land to outsiders or members of other clans. Lack of access to land and insecurity of tenure are major obstacles to durable solutions and represent a root problem that must be addressed in order to affect change. In urban areas of Somalia, evictions are common and likely to increase as the security situation stabilizes, urbanization continues, and foreign and domestic investment increases. Rural-urban migration and growing urbanisation add their own complexity to the situation, as these are global phenomena in developing countries that need to be taken into account

The SC uses the concept of due diligence as a standard for all sustainable shelter solutions decisions pertaining to Housing, Land, and Property (HLP). This concept requires shelter actors to: (1) achieve as much legal certainty about land rights as is reasonable, given the context and constraints on resources and time; and (2) reduce, as much as possible, the risk that the construction of shelter causes or contributes to increasing tensions and conflicts around land; and (3) avoid future eviction of the beneficiaries.

The due diligence standard requires shelter actors to establish an on-going process that both anticipates and responds to issues relating to land rights, as they emerge or where there is a risk that they may emerge during shelter construction. This requires awareness amongst key staff members of the connections between land rights and shelter as well as the mainstreaming of basic land rights verification and monitoring in all shelter activities (either directly or through out-sourcing). The creation of information sharing protocols and establishments of internal rules and procedures are also key when applying the due diligence standard.


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